Jennifer Connelly Joins 'Top Gun: Maverick'; Here's Everything We Know

Jennifer Connelly Joins 'Top Gun: Maverick'; Here's Everything We Know

Jul 26, 2018

American Pastoral

Update 3: While original stars Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer are both on deck for Top Gun: Maverick and Miles Teller will be taking over the role of Goose's son for the Top Gun sequel, apparently we won't be seeing Kelly McGillis reprising her love interest character from the 1986 blockbuster. In her place, Jennifer Connelly (above in American Pastoral) has been cast as the new female lead.

Originally reported by Deadline and later confirmed by Tom Cruise while he promoted Mission: Impossible - Fallout, Connelly's casting is still somewhat mysterious. Is she Maverick's new love interest? Could she potentially be replacing original Top Gun actress Meg Ryan as the Teller character's mom? Both?

Entertainment Tonight got the scoop that Connelly's character is a single mom who runs a bar near the Navy base where Cruise's Maverick works as an instructor. Cruise told the show of the news: "When you see the film, you'll see why she's perfect for it. She has such a very talented, very vibrant, and... we're just going to have a great cast. [It's] gonna be a lot of fun."

(Our previously-published posts follow.)


Update 2: While returning stars Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer are locked for Top Gun: Maverick, the sequel is now in search of a new addition to the cast. In the tradition of franchise legacies, the long-awaited Top Gun sequel will feature the offspring of a deceased character. In this case, an adult version of Goose's son, whom we saw as a boy in the 1986 original. 

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the sequel's producers (including Cruise) are in a deep search for the right actor for the role. Current frontrunners include Miles Teller (Whiplash), Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road) and Glen Powell (Hidden Figures). Reportedly, Dylan O'Brien and Austin Butler were previously in the mix. 

Talent aside, which of the three finalists would be the best fit? Let's remember that this is the child of characters played by Anthony Edwards and Meg Ryan. Powell might look right. But Teller (above in War Dogs) seems to be the most likely match to share the screen with Cruise as a hothead novice pilot. 

Update 1: Iceman will return. Val Kilmer will star opposite Tom Cruise in Top Gun: Maverick, according to The Wrap.

The actor appeared opposite Cruise as an extremely competitive pilot known as Iceman in the original Top Gun. (His boastful line to Cruise, "you can be my wingman any time," has entered popular culture.) Eventually, Iceman develops a begrudging respect for Cruise's character, known as Maverick.

Kilmer expressed his eagerness to appear in the sequel back in 2015, though he later acknowledged any announcement would be premature. Top Gun: Maverick will soar into theaters on July 12, 2019.

(Read all we know about the film in our previous post below.)


Do you feel the need … the need for speed? Tom Cruise does, as evidenced by the photo he shared from the first day of production on Top Gun 2.

We've been anticipating the sequel for years (see our article below). Cruise confirmed last year that the new film will have the same tone and will be stylistically similar, featuring a new music score from original composer Harold Faltermeyer. Beyond that, precious few details have been revealed, but Paramount Pictures has scheduled the film for theatrical release on July 12, 2019.

(Read our previous post, published on May 25, 2017, below.)


Earlier today, we got an update on the status of Top Gun 2, and now we've got more news about the long-awaited sequel. Here's what we know so far:

Is it really happening? 

According to Tom Cruise, "definitely." He believes they'll begin shooting next year. 

Who's going to direct?

Sadly, original Top Gun helmer Tony Scott is no longer with us, so Paramount is reportedly eyeing Joseph Kosinski for the job, according to Variety.

What makes him qualified?

Kosinski's first two movies are good indicators that he's right for Top Gun 2. With Tron: Legacy, he showed he could deliver a follow-up to a decades-old classic (that was 28 years after Tron, the Top Gun sequel would be around 33-34 years after the original). And with Oblivion, he worked with Cruise (see below). It's unclear if his upcoming Granite Mountain will be relevant somehow.

Is there a script?

Yes, the latest is said to be a draft by Justin Marks (The Jungle Book), while names attached in the past include Peter Craig (The Town) and Ashley Miller and Zack Stentz (Thor).

What's it about?

While unconfirmed at this point in the process, previous reports had Top Gun 2 centered around drone warfare and the role of fighter pilots like Maverick (Cruise) in this era of remote combat.

Will Cruise be doing his own stunts?

That's his thing now, so probably, and in the past he's expressed interest in literally flying the jets he'll be seen piloting on screen.

Is anyone else returning for the sequel? 

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer, of course, as teased in a photograph last year. And Val Kilmer stated back in 2015 that he's reprising his role as Iceman.

Are we sure this is really happening this time?

Don't quote us on it, but Cruise's quote sounds pretty sure.

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